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  Monday, October 21, 2019
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The Greek foreign minister will meet with her Russian counterpart
The Greek foreign minister will meet with her Russian counterpart in Moscow on Wednesday to discuss a broad variety of bilateral and international issues, the Greek ministry said.

Dora Bakoyannis, whose country presides over the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) this year, will meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to discuss issues "addressed by the OSCE, including the crisis in the Caucasus and the shaping of a new security architecture for Europe."

Russia and Georgia fought a five-day war after Georgia attacked South Ossetia in early August last year. Moscow subsequently recognized South Ossetia and Abkhazia, another disputed Georgian republic, as independent states on August 26.

Last month, during a meeting of foreign ministers of the 26-nation intergovernmental security body in Finland, Lavrov strongly criticized the OSCE for its failure to "react to the illegal use of force [by Georgia]," and demanded an official enquiry into the August events in the Caucasus.

The Greek ministry also said in a statement that "the two foreign ministers will also look at issues of particular interest to the two countries, such as energy, developments in the Middle East, the Cyprus issue and the course of EU-Russian relations."

The issue of energy will also be high on the agenda during the foreign ministers' meeting. Last week Kostis Khatzidhakis, the Greek development minister, announced that his country may seek compensation from Russia after shortages in gas deliveries due to a dispute over a new gas contract with Ukraine.

Russian gas supplies started reaching European consumers on Tuesday for the first time since January 7 when Russian energy giant Gazprom suspended deliveries to Europe through Ukraine following accusations that Kiev was stealing Russian gas.

Following talks Sunday between the two country's premiers, Gazprom and Ukrainian energy company Naftogaz signed on Monday a Russian gas supply deal to Ukraine for 2009-2019, allowing for the restart of gas transits to Europe.

Russia delivers about 6 million cu m of gas per day to Greece, around two-thirds of the country's consumption. During the dispute Greece was forced to purchase extra gas from Azerbaijan, as well as liquefied gas from Algeria.


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